Just Two Normal Geniuses

Date: 2018-08-24
Pose Count: 25
Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 19:06:12 95766
It's an awful hot summer in Tokyo, but it is summer at least, so most of the students of Tokyo's various schools are out with friends, visiting the mall or staying home out of the heat. But not Ami Mizuno, for whom studying is basically a pastime. Even cram school in the summer does let out eventually, though.

And someone had been waiting in the shade of a tree for her, back leaned against the bark. When she walked by, he started to follow, and he... Reached over her head entirely, dangling a white Teddy Polar Bear in front of her face, with a blue ribbon on it's neck, and cute black eyes and nose. It's bigger than her head and is held by one of its stuffed arms.

And the person behind her, surprising her with it and tall enough to get away with it, is Takashi Agera. "Gotcha something..." He says.
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-24 19:14:53 95767
Ami stops, and does not take the bear. Instead, she moves to stand in the shade of another, different tree nearby, expecting Takashi to follow her. She leans against it, blue eyes holding curiosity and not a little frustration as she looks over at her erstwhile boyfriend.

"You know you have to do more than give me a teddy bear, cute as it may be, to fix things, right?" she says, arms crossing over her chest. "I mean, it's a start, but this goes beyond gifts, Takashi." At least she's not using an honorific?

Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 19:22:49 95768
Takashi is a little bummed she doesn't take the bear, and it shows, but he follows her directly anyways. "So I have gathered, yes. Plenty of other people were clear about that when I helped stop a crazy fanatic from stabbing someone at Chi... Mamoru-san's house."

"But even if you're mad at me, that doesn't mean I don't see nice things and want you to have them." He pauses.

"I like making you smile. Even if I'm not super good at it sometimes..."
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-24 19:30:32 95769
It takes a moment, but her smile appears, small though genuine. She takes the plush toy and hugs it to her chest. "Thank you, Takashi."

There's a pause. "Last night was crazy, I heard." She looks a little distant. "I don't think I'm doing so hot with helping people keep track of what threats are in town." Her voice is pitched lower, her eyes on his. "What happened?"
Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 19:39:30 95770
Ami's smile is reflected in an equally small one from Takashi. It goes away when Ami asks about Ryo. But first... "You can't blame yourself for that; there's a lot going on, it's chaotic. I have an entire organization that works for me and I can't know everything magical that happens in Tokyo." Plus Ami had one of Takashi's experiments distracting her and her friends...

"Lacrima's blood brother turned into some sort of uberjerk that calls himself Saint George. Possibly even the real reincarnation. And he's been after Lacrima calling her a monster, and fighting everyone else. He tried to kill her right in Mamoru's little clubhouse. It didn't go well, because everyone showed up to put the kibosh on that..."
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-24 19:44:25 95771
Ami nods. She manages not to grimace at the mention of UMBRA, but only just. And the unspoken thing about Mirai Terra hangs between them thick like lard, unpalatable and impenetrable--not ready to be melted down yet.

"That's... that's awful. I'm sorry I had to miss it, but my mother was actually available to have dinner last night." She stares out past him for a moment, hugging the bear tighter.

Then, a bombshell. "Takashi?" Her voice is small, distant like her gaze. "Do you still like me?"
Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 19:48:48 95772
Takashi looks at Ami, into her eyes, and then cocks his head. "Well, I'm not really in the business of waiting outside in the worst heat wave Tokyo has had in years to give gifts to people I don't like." He points out.

"But more than that, I care a whole lot more about you than just like. Ami-chan, I speak four languages and I still can't figure out how to accurately express just how much I care for you in mere words..."
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-24 19:53:05 95773
Ami nods, then, looking down at the bear in her arms. She then smiles again, crookedly, before taking Takashi's arm. "Can you walk me home?" she asks quietly. "I want to talk." But the way she holds his arm is charmingly sweet, not angry, and the other arm holds the polar teddy bear under its arms. "I've missed--us. This. No... politics, of sorts. Just... enjoying company." A beat. "Maybe we can have a soda or a milkshake near my house? At Crown?"
Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 20:00:57 95774
When Ami takes his arm like that, and looks at him like that... His face visibly brightens, and his features soften. And he looks less like Riventon, the Director and villain, and a lot more like Takashi, the orphan high school student who played chess with her.

And he opens his mouth, and closes it. He has learned over all this time to let relationship related things, of any stripe, go at Ami's pace entirely. "Wherever you want to go today is fine as long as it's with you. " He puts his hand in his pocket and silences his Eclipse phone.
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-24 20:05:54 95775
Ami beams at him. "Milk smoothies and maybe some chess? I have the chess set." She looks at him rather affectionately then, her eyes soft, more like the sky on a cloudless day than the icy looks she's been prone to so often with him.

Her hand, the one attached to the arm the bear is in, carries her bookbag. She waits for his answer, bouncing lightly on the balls of her feet. She's happy, excited, waiting for her boyfriend, not her greatest foe, for once.
Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 20:13:17 95776
Takashi nods emphatically. "It's been too long since we played. Oh! Last time I was in there Motoki-san had apparently changed the menu back to milkshakes. Did Usagi-san get past that moment?" He was grateful to be talking about something different than how bad he'd screwed up, especially this week.

"You know, I miss this too. Being with you. We should really go back to doing this more often; chess, takoyaki. I mean. If that's okay."
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-24 20:17:02 95777
Smiling, Ami nods too. "I'd like that." Then she pauses. "I um. I think so?" About Usagi getting over That Moment. "I hope so, because 'milk smoothie' doesn't roll off the tongue so well, does it."
Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 20:24:46 95778
Takashi laughs. "No, it never has. I think if it was anyone else asking there's no way Motoki would have changed it, or the rest of us going along with it, but it was Usagi and so you know." He shrugs as if to say 'what are we gonna do'.

He turns to her. "Do they actually have anything to teach you at this cram school or do you just enjoy the peace and quiet because they know you're already past the whole curriculum?" He asks with a smile.
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-24 20:32:19 95779
Ami giggles. "True. Usagi just... has that way about her." She sounds so fond, fonder than she'll ever be of Takashi, but in a totally different way. It's hard to explain, how fond Ami is of Usagi. It's a deep and abiding but very platonic love.

"You caught me. It's very soothing." She admits it with a smile and a shrug. "And, of course, it looks good on my university transcript."
Takashi Agera 2018-08-24 20:36:29 95780
Takashi turns to look at her and smile yet again. And he's really looking at her now, perhaps as Ami more than Sailor Mercury too, a subtle but important difference. "You mean it'll make you look better on the University's transcript. There's going to be one hell of a fight to try to attract you. Probably from far outside Tokyo. To get the genius student who's going to become a genius doctor." He doesn't sound jealous, just truly happy for her on that front.
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-25 17:08:16 95907
Blushing vividly, Ami smiles back at Takashi. It's a little shy. "Maybe," is all she says, her eyes on his. "Maybe." But she's glowing as she notices the slight difference in how he's looking at her; her shoulders lift and square off, her slight slump improves. She goes from completely shy to shyly confident. Which, too, is a mild difference, but a marked one.
Takashi Agera 2018-08-25 17:13:43 95909
It is perhaps telling that, as they walk, Takashi struggles slightly to find relevant things that don't touch on his job. Or her duty. To be 'normal' - which neither of them are, or were even before the magic spilled over.

"Absolutely." he says after a pause, a response to her maybe. Flattering people close to him comes naturally, an extension of his self pride to having pride in people connected to him.

But he's at a loss for words for a moment as theu just walk, and it's visible; he has things he would say but they would all violate the soft agreement. He can't even talk about the weather! The storms are, after all, magic. Finally, he settles on "You're really pretty." Because he has to say something both true and safe.
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-25 17:19:11 95910
That blush, already bright, goes practically neon. "Thank you, Takashi." Ami looks at him again as they walk.

After a moment, she pauses under another tree, turning to look at him. "This isn't easy, is it?" And she lifts a hand to caress his cheek briefly. "I appreciate it." Violating the soft agreement, briefly, before walking on as if she hadn't stopped, tugging Takashi along with her. As if those words hadn't been spoken.

School. School is a safe subject. "Are you looking forward to classes starting up again?"
Takashi Agera 2018-08-25 17:26:33 95911
Takashi freezes when she touched his cheek - every part of him stalls out for a moment, like he's rebooting - except the beating of his heart. Then she's tugging him and he's walking and she's asking about school.

"Yeah, actually. I'm not as much of a cram school fanatic as you but there's some new high-level classes coming to Infinity, stuff on Machine Learning and Aplied Biogenetics and a couple other ones, university-level stuff they're going to let me take. I just have to decide which and sort out my schedule."

They're not far from the Crown, now. The taller boy looks over at her, the bear in her hand, and the blush on her face and smiles. He's just happy, for once, and it has nothing to do with plans or plots and everything to do with one singualar person. It won't last forever but even his Dark Energy can't resist enough that he won't bask in it for the moment...
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-25 17:29:47 95912
Ami giggles a little, smiling. "Hey," she protests lightly, not at all seriously. "I'd rather be a cram school fanatic than doing nothing." Which is a lie. Ami Mizuno could never do nothing. Between studying, her Senshi work, and having friends now, it's all... different.

But she looks at Takashi with some tenderness. "That's interesting. I'd love to see notes from those classes, if you can share," she says, thoughtfully. "They must really recognize your genius, too." It's her turn to purely be happy, proud of him.
Takashi Agera 2018-08-25 17:38:43 95914
Takashi looks at her in a way that indicates that he knows she would find SOMETHING to do with her time; but says nothing.

"You are welcome to them, especially if you don't mind coming over to read th.." Stop. "meeting me to read them. Crown is fine!" He is only a little bit flaily for a moment. Sometimes his mouth gets ahead of his brain. Which is saying something.

"They recognize my potential to benefit them, in any case." He might be talking about the school as an entity - or Eclipse, given that Infinity is hooked into that whole ecosystem. "I don't know if anyone but you can recognize it - understand it."
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-25 17:44:16 95915
Ami smiles. "Maybe," she says again. "And yeah, any excuse to hang out with you!" She giggles softly. The words with you hang in the air briefly, contrasting the unspoken as opposed to fighting with you.
Takashi Agera 2018-08-25 17:48:59 95916
Takashi has to untangle his arm from Ami's - with some actual hesitation to do so - but only because they've gotten to the Crown and he has to lean in and open the door for her, like he needs to prove when the planets align he can be a gentleman.

"Tell me what you want and I'll get it, if you find us a booth and set the game up?" he offers. "I have to get a large enough milkshake to be okay when you once more terrifically rout me, Chess Club Princess."
Ami Mizuno 2018-08-25 17:54:37 95917
Ami smiles. "Well, I think I'd like a chocolate milkshake this time." She hesitates a moment. "Would you like to share some french fries?" she asks, before her smile turns crooked. "Well, I could always take it easy on you," she teases lightly, before looking around and finding a nice booth for them to share and play chess at.
Takashi Agera 2018-08-25 18:01:18 95920
Takashi waits in line and comes back with a chocolate shake, a large vanilla malt, and an also large order of chili-cheese fries. Because they are both Mahou, and really... calories in, magic out. Takashi has seen his girlfriend end hamburgers in a single bite.

But once he gets there and sees the table all set up, he puts the food down and looks at Ami. "May I make a terribly forward request? You can put it back if you would prefer, but..." he turns the board sideways so that the pieces are on the left and right, the insinuation being sitting next to her rather than across the booth as usual.